Center Point embraces young team ahead of playoffs

Updated: Nov. 5, 2020 at 4:32 PM CST
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CENTER POINT, Ala. (WBRC) - It’s win or go home for the Center Point Eagles this Friday as the AHSAA playoffs begin.

Center Point will head to No. 10 Fairview in Class 5A for our Sideline Game of the Week, but when it comes to the playoffs this year, head coach George Bates says he’s experiencing something new.

“This is the first time as a head coach that I’ve actually been stressed getting to this point," said Bates.

That’s because the Eagles are young this year. After losing 15 seniors, five who are now playing college ball, Center Point starts seven sophomores, two freshman and an eighth grader.

“We have a lot of players who aren’t as talented as they were last year, but we’re still just as good because we’ve been around each other a lot longer and that’s what makes a team gel and be good in football,” said Center Point linebacker Khalid Collier.

Center Point is 7-3 heading into the playoffs and this Friday they’re taking a big risk. Because they’re so young, Coach Bates is still moving players around to different positions to see what works.

“It took ten games for some guys to realize he may be be suited for this spot or he may need to get reps at this spot, normally you wouldn’t do that heading into the playoffs, but right now it’s about finding your niche," said Bates.

Whether if it’s pays off Friday or next season, Coach Bates is excited about the future. “We will now have film on them from practice and one game and hopefully we’ll reap the benefits next season," he said.

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